Niger endured austere military rule for much of its post-independence history and remains today one of the world's least-developed nations. Prone to drought, the country sometimes struggles to feed its population. Niger’s main export, uranium, is vulnerable to price fluctuations and agriculture is threatened by the encroaching desert. While on oil exploration and gold mining have the potential to boost Niger’s fortunes, food insecurity is the recurrent bottleneck and the country ranks last out of 187 countries in in the 2012 Human Development Index.
How We Are Helping?
UNCDF is helping Niger to address Niger’s development challenges through the Projet Appui au Développement Economique Local (PADEL II) programme. The programme aims, by 2014, at ensuring that people of the Maradi region have access to public and financial services to promote local economic development and to improve food security, lowering the incidence of weld and reducing malnutrition. The $10m project is jointly supported by UNCDF, UNDP, the Government of Niger and the Belgian Fund for Food Security (BFFS).
PADEL consists of two sub-programmes which aim at promoting local economic development in the Maradi region reducing food insecurity and the vulnerability of target groups. Moreover, the sub-programme Développement local et Sécurlté Állmentaire (DELSA) and the sub-programme Programme d’Appui au Développement de la Microfinance (PADMIF) contribute to the promotion of a sustainable supply of financial services in a cleaner and more secure environment.
LOBI, over a 5 year period beginning in early 2013, will support the definition of cross-border strategies and the piloting of cross-border local development processes to improve the economic stability and human security in the regions.
Moreover, the Local Government Financial And Institutional Diagnostic For Development (LOGFIDD), is be both a process and a tool to assess the functioning of the local authorities in Niger and to assist them in finding appropriate solutions regarding their management and governance.